West Ham United are reportedly looking to sign Burnley defender James Tarkowski to add more strength and depth to their defence.
A report from the Evening Standard claims that The Hammers, who have already had a couple of bids rejected for Tarkowski, will return with an improved offer of £30million plus addons, which could be enough for Burnley to sell.
Tarkowski wants to leave Turf Moor to improve his chances of breaking into the English national side, but will he be effective an effective option for West Ham?
James Tarkowski and his experience
Having started his senior career with Oldham Athletic, Tarkowski moved to the Premier League for the first time with Burnley in 2016, and took no time to cement a place in the first team.
The 27-year-old played every minute for Burnley in the Premier League last season, putting in some solid performances at the back.
He has 123 top-flight appearances to date and also has two international caps but he has not been able to break into Gareth Southgate’s squad, which will be his aim in the upcoming campaign.
Is Tarkowski the right player for West Ham United?
David Moyes usually stuck to a traditional four-man backline last season but could not use a settled centre-back pairing thanks to lack of quality in his squad.
Issa Diop, Angelo Ogbonna and Fabian Balbuena were all used as centre-backs but none of those players showed enough consistency for the manager to stick with them as the first choice next season.
Tarkowski, with all his experience, will walk into the first team and will surely make their backline more secure.
The Hammers do have Winston Reid coming back from his MLS loan but Tarkowski, at 27, is a more viable option and could be a long term solution to West Ham’s defensive problems.
Tarkowski is a no-nonsense defender, whose strength in the air and understanding of the game allows him to win most duels.
He is excellent at winning the ball back even inside his own box and though gives away fouls at times, he can put his body on the line to ensure his side gets over the line, something we have seen plenty of times during his spell with Burnley.
The 27-year old can also be the leader at the back and will add some much-needed quality to West Ham’s defence if this move goes through.
The system at Burnley allowed Tarkowski to play in a comfort zone, but West Ham have good defensive midfielders in Declan Rice, Mark Noble and Tomas Soucek, so Tarkowski will have the opportunity to settle in quickly.